by John Yeo

Autumn winds blowing from the north.
The day dawns, cold with thick gray cloud 
Just becoming visible,
I leave the house at first light.
A solitary bird greets me as I arrive
Flying off with a cry of alarm.
I pick up my spade and begin to dig
Turning the clods of earth over.
I take a break to gather some crops
Leeks, Cabbage, Kale and Carrots.
A productive autumn bounty. 
I continue to dig and turn the soil.
Rooks and Magpies are calling loudly.
The swirling wind scatters leaves around.
As my spade works, earthworms appear
Surfacing from the depths of the ground.
My mind drifts with the swirling leaves.
‘How can you photograph the wind?
You can’t!’ I answer the question.
‘You can only photograph the wind’s breath.
To watch a large Gull, gliding on the wind stream,
Lazily floating across the turbulent sky.
To see the distinctive plumage of a Jay
Frantically seeking cover from leafless trees.
This is the allotment on an autumn morn
Fresh air provided by a restless wind
Close to nature in the awakening dawn.
Exercise aplenty as I wield the spade.
Fresh organic vegetables to harvest.
Nurturing produce from the tiniest seed.
Meeting up with fellow gardeners.
A satisfactory activity to the thinking man.

Copyright © Written by John Yeo ~ All rights reserved.


15th November 2016 ~ Poetry Challenge ~ Day 15

2016 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 15
By: Robert Lee Brewer ~ November 15, 2016

For today’s prompt, we’re on our third two-for-Tuesday prompt. So pick one, combine both prompts into one poem, or write two (or more) different poems. Here are the prompts:

Write a natural poem. A poem about something natural. It could be a natural way of living, something made of natural materials, nature itself, or some other spin. Or…
Write an unnatural poem. Take the natural prompt and spin it around the other way. Maybe this means writing a poem about processed food, supernatural apparitions, or some other unnatural object.

Images courtesy of

Birds and the NATURAL survival power of flight, and the fight for survival.


by John Yeo

We survived the unruly protection of the nest
There were two of us left on the final day
Pushing and fighting for survival of the fittest
The others died slowly and wasted away.
One day we were forced to fend for each other.
Pushed into flight by our parents insisting
The shining iridescent plumage glistened over
As the feathers formed and became powerful wings.


Gliding, soaring gracefully, a bird on the move,
A fully fledged miracle flying in heaven’s high.
Soaring close to the clouds floating above.
Survival in the folds of an unpredictable sky.
Calling loudly with a natural melody 
Revelling in a new found freedom of spirit.
A powerful instinctive natural urge to belong
To the freedom of the life we were now to inherit.

Copyright © ~ Written by John Yeo ~ All rights reserved.

A songbird in a cage trapped and captured to provide entertainment and amusement for the idle rich in Victorian times.


by John Yeo

Do you have to torture me, trapped in here?
I enjoy your treats when I cry out to you.
I think you like the sound of my voice
Complaining in tune.”

“I particularly hate that hook by the window,
Where you hang this prison sometimes.
I envy the freedom of birds in flight.
My soul breaks out in tune.”

“My heart is slowly wasting away
I am losing the urge to keep up the fight
Yet whenever I try to reach you to beg for release
You reward my tune with a treat.”

Copyright © ~ Written by John Yeo ~ All rights reserved.


… Bird in a Cage | by paulmcdee


2nd November 2016 ~ Poetry Challenge ~ Day 2

2016 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 2
By: Robert Lee Brewer ~ November 2, 2016

For today’s prompt, write an animal spirit poem (or spirit animal poem). What I’m thinking is to make the title of the poem the animal and then write a poem as if you are that animal. Or look at ways you identify with that animal. Another possibility (if this is too New Age): Write a poem about an animal. Period.


WARNING ~ The poem that follows will make you feel uneasy. If you are upset by Nature “Red in Tooth and Claw” ~ Look away now!


Free Image Courtesy of


by John Yeo

The day started clear with a thin fine mist.
I left the den in the early light.

Gambolling and chasing my fellow cubs.
Father came back with a rabbit.

We feasted well, tearing the fur and the flesh,
I got in trouble for spilling fresh blood,
All over my bushy red tail.
The rabbit’s fur blew away in the wind.
Then came the fearful sound of a horn
With hounds snarling and yelping.
Barking fiercely in the morning mist
A fearful sound that we hated.
The vixen, my mother, led us away
Father ran into the  hunters.

My fearful father ran for his life,

The hounds caught his scent and gave chase.
We watched the hunters on horseback,
Following the hounds to enjoy the kill.
My exhausted father dropped to the ground
The pack tore his soul to pieces.
Tearing his fur and flesh apart,

Spilling his blood all over their fur,
My mother the vixen led us away,
With tears, that would soon be abated.
My father’s red fur blew away with the wind.


Copyright © Written by John Yeo ~ All rights reserved.


For today’s prompt, write a nature poem. For many poets, the first thing that may pop to mind includes birds, trees, waterfalls, rivers, and such. But there’s also human nature, nature vs. nurture, and other things natural, including natural selection and being a “natural” at something. Let your nature take it where it will today.


Copyright IMAGE © John and Margaret


by John Yeo

Are you a product of nature

Or were you built by nurture?

Please explain what makes you tick.

The question is surely a trick

A kick to gain advantage.


To ask me if I considered

If it was natural to be nurtured

Or if nurture is human nature

A natural way to behave.


Did I inherit all I am

From my inbuilt genes.

Or did my environment

Programme me to behave?


I am simply a natural person

Following my own human nature,

Which was nurtured by loves example

And disciplined to conform.


I have been a natural survivor

Since the day I was born.


Copyright © Written by John Yeo ~ All rights reserved

Written for Robert Lee Brewer’s Poetic asides blog on “Writers Digest”

2015 April PAD Challenge: Day 22